Lin-Manuel Miranda brought Broadway to Saturday Night Live — and theater nerds everywhere are loving it. The Hamilton creator-writer-star and all-around beloved artist didn’t just stick to his musical theater roots while hosting SNL. He owned them.
In what will no doubt be one of the most viral sketches of the night, “Crucible Cast Party,” Miranda and the Nasty Gals — Kate McKinnon, Aidy Bryant, Cecily Strong, Vanessa Bayer and new cast member Melissa Villaseñor — brought us to a cast party following a high school production of The Crucible, and it was glorious.
The awkward flirting, constant musical theater references and braces should be familiar to anyone who went near theater in high school. And Miranda fans were overjoyed, if not a bit disturbed, by the opportunity to relive their high school years.
“Crucible Cast Party” wasn’t the only sketch to celebrate musical theater. Miranda re-worked Hamilton‘s “My Shot” for his opening monologue, and references throughout the show to Rent, Footloose and Grease 2 delighted theater kids. There was even a sketch based on The Music Man, and some of Miranda’s SNL portraits were Singin’ in the Rain themed. Even the commercials were Broadway-themed, with many of the ad breaks filled with commercials for current Broadway productions. In other words, it was clear that Saturday Night Live definitely knew its audience tonight, and the entire episode felt like a love letter to theater kids everywhere.
Of course, the episode wasn’t all musical theater. The Trump Tapes scandal featured heavily in the show, taking over the cold open, which poked fun at Trump’s apology video, and making up a good half of the “Weekend Update” jokes. Other highlights included a delightful Stranger Things sketch, appearances by Tina Fey and Jimmy Fallon as two undecided voters and a superb digital short starring Kate McKinnon as Trump campaign manager Kellyanne Conway called “A Day Off with Kellyanne Conway.”
Before you go, check out our slideshow below.